Aihole, the earliest Capital of the Chalukyas is a striking village town nestling on the banks of the Malaprabha River. The region is arrayed with plethora of most beautiful temple complex. An ideal place for vacation for historic lover, Aihole displays some of the splendid temple ruins in particular. All the temples have exquisite, intricate carvings that were done between the 5th and 8th centuries.
The region enshrines with 125 temples. The temples are divided into 22 groups and are scattered all over the village. Aihole town is well connected with Badami via Pattadakkal by regular buses.
The Temple Attractions
There are a number of temples of interest in Aihole that have witnessed the glorious past of Chalukya regime.
Ladhkhan temple in Aihole is the most ancient temple structure, dating back to the 5th century. On the roof of the temple is another shrine-like Vimana that captivates its visitors.
The Durga (Fort) Temple
The Durga Fort Temple is distinguished for its semi-circular arches, raised plinth and a large gallery that encompasses the shrine. Chamlundi Devi punishing the buffalo demon. Narasimha-the half-man half-lion God and Ardhanari the half-male half-female deity Mahisasura Mardini are beautifully carved sculptures that leaves its visitors spellbind.
The Hutchimalli Temple
The Hutchimalli Temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu. The temple is situated outside the village housing an image of Vishnu perching atop a gigantic cobra.
The Revalphadi Cave Temple
The Revalphadi Cave is another attraction of the town. The cave temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva, which is renowned for its elegant and intricate carvings and details. Dating back to the 6th Century, Ravalphadi Cave -temple showcases Shiva in diverse forms.
Konthi Temple Complex (Kwanthi Gudi), the Uma Maheswari Temple with a ravishing carved sculpture of Brahma nestling on a lotus, the forbidding Jain Meguti Temple and the two storied Buddhist Temple are worth a visit site.
¤ Museums & Art Galleries
A Sculpture Gallery is being maintained by the Archaeological Survey of India in the Durga Temple Complex.
¤ Excursions From Aihole
Badami (44 km)
Badami is famous for its cave temples, chiseled out of a red sandstone rock on the cliff of a hill, is worth a visit on your travel vacation in Karnatka. The temples are dedicated to Lord Vishnu and Shiva. Besides, Badami also houses Jain caves exhibiting the architecture of Chalukyan regime.
Koodalasangama (45 km)
Located in Bagalkot district, Koodalasangama makes an important pilgrim center of Hindus. Sangameshwara Temple is finest example of Chalukyan-style of architecture. The region is also linked with the renowned 12th century poet and reformer Basaveshwara.
Pattadakal (22 km)
Pattadakal treasures Chalukya's rarest art splendor in its temple architecture. 22 km away from Badami and 514 km from Bangalore, Pattadakal makes an excellent excursion from the city.
¤ Accessibility To Aihole
Air: The nearest airport is Belgaum-189 km, which is connected to Mumbai by Vayudoot flights.
Rail: The nearest railhead is Bagalkot-34km on the Hubli-Sholapur meter gauge line.
By Road: Bangalore is 510 km away. Package tours are conducted every day from Bangalore during the tourist season. You can use any road service from Belgaum city via Bagalkot to reach Aihole. Important destinations are Badami-44km, Bangalore-510km, Pattadakal-22 km.